A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
This books will illuminate the Vietnam war for young people. It can help spark teens to learn more about the war. Our "Families Can Talk About" section can point parents and teens to some other interesting discussion topics.
This a realistic depiction of the Vietnam War without the glamour Hollywood often provides. Readers will have to think about the cost of war. Is it worth what it does to people fighting on either side?
Positive Role Models
Richie puts a human face on war. Through him -- and his often dispassionate telling of the horrors he has seen -- readers will get a true sense of the effects of war on a young person.
Violence & Scariness
Extreme, graphic war violence to both soldiers and civilians. Depicts shootings and explosions, including a woman who booby-traps a small child to explode in an American soldier's arms.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Violence & Scariness in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Sex, Romance & Nudity
References to some sexual fantasies of the soldiers.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Sex, Romance & Nudity in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Constant and extreme -- a realistic depiction of soldier talk. Asian people referred to as "gooks," as was common among American soldiers.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Language in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Soldiers drink, smoke marijuana.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Drinking, Drugs & Smoking in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this book realistically describes what it was like for American soldiers fighting in Vietnam in 1967-68. Expect profanity, poor grammar, and graphic violence; there are depictions of shootings and explosions, including a woman who booby-traps a small child to explode in an American soldier's arms. The story builds until the soldiers and readers are caught in a vortex of war. Richie asks some big questions -- about the reasons for the war, about the treatment of African-Americans, and more. The realism, humor, and intensity attract even reluctant readers and keep them reading -- and thinking about the cost of war.
Is It Any Good?
Reading FALLEN ANGELS can be an intense experience, one that even reluctant readers may appreciate. This highly realistic depiction of young soldiers fighting the ground war in Vietnam was one of the first books to illuminate that war for young people. Today's adolescents, who were born after the Vietnam War, may not know much about it -- but that's OK because this book focuses on the experiences of the soldiers, not on the history of the war. Myers has the ability to make readers care about his characters and see them as real human beings. Ultimately, this is a vivid and unvarnished portrayal of the war in Vietnam.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.